Warm temperatures cause early hay fever
Germany

Warm temperatures cause early hay fever

Warm temperatures are causing everything from runny noses to conditions ripe for avalanches. But Germany could face a bit of a cold snap within the next week as rain and snow batters much of the country.

Leverkusen fans frantic for Barca match tickets
Germany

Leverkusen fans frantic for Barca match tickets

Desperate football fans swamped Bayer Leverkusen’s phone lines with 200,000 calls on Tuesday in a frantic attempt to get tickets to the club’s Champions League match against FC Barcelona in February.

Jailed Swedish reporters will not appeal verdict
Sweden

Jailed Swedish reporters will not appeal verdict

Two Swedish reporters, sentenced to prison by an Ethiopian court in December, have chosen not to appeal their guilty verdict and instead pin their hopes of being released on the country's "tradition of pardon".

Ethnic discrimination rife among employers: study
Norway

Ethnic discrimination rife among employers: study

Job seekers with Norwegian names stand a much better chance of securing employment than applicants with more unfamiliar names, a new report has shown.

Ericsson name dropped from new Sony phone
Sweden

Ericsson name dropped from new Sony phone

Sony on Tuesday launched its first mobile handsets without the “Sony Ericsson” brand name at an electronics show in Las Vegas, marking a symbolic end to the company's ten year collaboration with the Swedish telecoms giant.

Sister retracts ‘honour killing’ allegations
Sweden

Sister retracts ‘honour killing’ allegations

A 21-year-old woman from Gothenburg in western Sweden who had accused her brother of threatening to take her life in an “honour killing", retracted her allegations on the opening day of the trial on Monday.

‘In a networked world, Sweden may be more powerful than the US’
Sweden

‘In a networked world, Sweden may be more powerful than the US’

While there is little doubt that Sweden's military power is dwarfed by that of the United States, in a networked world Sweden may nevertheless find itself better equipped than the US to exert influence on the global stage, argues contributor Stefan Geens.

T-mobile phones to get Groupon offers
Germany

T-mobile phones to get Groupon offers

People with T-Mobile phones could soon find Groupon offers popping up on their phones for shops they are walking past, as Deutsche Telekom confirmed it had entered a marketing deal with the US-based discount website.

Swiss tourist arrested for Alhambra wall graffiti
Switzerland

Swiss tourist arrested for Alhambra wall graffiti

An 18-year-old Swiss woman has been arrested in Granada, Spain, after she used her fingernails to draw a heart on the walls of the Alhambra palace.

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Sweden

Sweden boasts hefty budget surplus for 2011

Sweden’s national debt office (Riksgälden) stated on Tuesday that the country’s budget surplus from 2011 stood at 68 billion kronor ($9.85 billion).

Wall Street Journal launches German edition
Germany

Wall Street Journal launches German edition

The Wall Street Journal launched a German edition on Tuesday, breaking into the German business news market with what its editor promised would be a new, international, perspective.

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France

Police brutality row after man dies in custody

30-year-old Wissam El-Yamni, who had been in a coma since his arrest on New Year’s Eve in the city of Clermont-Ferrand, has died. An investigation into whether the police used excessive force during his arrest has been opened.

Scared Germans ‘wasting money on insurance’
Germany

Scared Germans ‘wasting money on insurance’

Scared Germans are wasting hundreds of euros every year on insurance policies they do not need as salesmen play on people’s fears, a consumer group warned this week.

Coalition at risk over financial transaction tax
Germany

Coalition at risk over financial transaction tax

Chancellor Angela Merkel is facing a crisis in her governing coalition after agreeing with French President Nicolas Sarkozy to push for a financial transaction tax, even if Britain opts out.

Ministry official fired over dodgy massage parlours
Sweden

Ministry official fired over dodgy massage parlours

A high-ranking civil servant in Sweden's defence ministry has been sacked after it was revealed he was involved in running several Thai massage parlours on the side.

Immigrant homelessness on the rise in Sweden
Sweden

Immigrant homelessness on the rise in Sweden

While there are fewer people sleeping rough in Sweden today, the total number of people in emergency housing or not qualifying on the ordinary housing market is rising, with those born outside of Sweden overrepresented among the homeless, according to fresh figures from the National Board of Health and Welfare (Socialstyrelsen).

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Switzerland

Hildebrand resignation ‘inevitable’: Swiss press

Swiss newspapers say the president of the Swiss National Bank (SNB) had no choice but to resign in light of his inability to prove his good faith after becoming embroiled in a currency scandal.

Hospital doctors ready to strike for better pay
Germany

Hospital doctors ready to strike for better pay

About 50,000 doctors will go on strike in 600 hospitals across Germany at the end of the month, after a vote which was overwhelmingly in favour of a walk-out.

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Switzerland

Swatch sales jump to $6 billion

The world's biggest watch group Swatch said on Tuesday it has for the first time exceeded 7 billion Swiss francs in annual sales despite the negative impact of the strong local currency.

French economy flatlining – new figures
France

French economy flatlining – new figures

The French economy was flat in the last three months of 2011, the Bank of France said Tuesday, confirming an earlier estimate amid concerns the eurozone debt crisis could spark a recession.

Hildebrand was pushed: report
Switzerland

Hildebrand was pushed: report

The resignation of Swiss central bank chief Philipp Hildebrand came at the urging of the eleven-member Bank Council, newspaper Blick reports.

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France

Muslim bride sues after order to remove veil

A newly-wed Muslim couple are suing the mayor of Lyon after a local official insisted the bride remove her veil at the town hall wedding ceremony.

Appeals court acquits Swedish ‘exorcist’
Sweden

Appeals court acquits Swedish ‘exorcist’

A Swedish man, convicted and sentenced to prison by the district court for abusing his wife and having her “exorcised”, has appealed the verdict and been acquitted by the Court of Appeals (Hovrätten).

Airline Norwegian charged flyers double
Norway

Airline Norwegian charged flyers double

Discount airline Norwegian has left thousands of customers out of pocket after charging them double the correct amount for their tickets in the latter half of last week.

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France

Angry cuckold bites back with flyer campaign

A man in his forties who discovered his wife was having an affair with another man launched a campaign exposing her betrayal to take revenge.

French stalker told ‘keep away from Kirsten Dunst’
France

French stalker told ‘keep away from Kirsten Dunst’

A US judge has extended for three years a restraining order against a French fan of Kirsten Dunst, saying he must keep away and not contact the US actress or her mother.

Movie’s ‘gunfire’ prompts police response
Sweden

Movie’s ‘gunfire’ prompts police response

A couple in northern Sweden who were watching a violent movie at home on Monday were surprised when police turned up in response to reports of gunfire and screams emanating from the apartment.

Cantona takes shot at French presidency
France

Cantona takes shot at French presidency

 

Footballer-turned-actor Eric Cantona, after failing in a quixotic bid to destroy global banking, is lining up a long-odds shot at the French presidency, according to a report Tuesday.

 

Identical quadruplets ‘one-in-13 million’
Germany

Identical quadruplets ‘one-in-13 million’

A woman has given birth to identical quadruplets which doctors said was statistically like winning the lottery – except that the family will see their lives changed by millions of nappies rather than banknotes.

Man in court after taking old biscuits from bin
Germany

Man in court after taking old biscuits from bin

A man who took a packet of out-of-date biscuits from a bin next to a bakery is fighting his way through the courts, opposing a charge of trespass.

Nazi-era mine washes ashore in Sweden
Sweden

Nazi-era mine washes ashore in Sweden

Bomb experts from the Swedish military have been called in to disarm what is believed to be a live, World War II-era German mine that washed ashore near Sundsvall in northern Sweden.

Family of five killed in head-on crash
Sweden

Family of five killed in head-on crash

A car carrying two adults and three children slammed head-on into an oncoming truck on Sweden's E20 motorway on Monday night, killing all five passengers.

German support for new North Africa underlined
Germany

German support for new North Africa underlined

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle has thrown strong support behind North Africa’s emerging democracies during an historic visit to Algeria, Libya and Tunisia, saying Germany wants to play a key role in helping them succeed.